The Joy of Celebrity Mental Illness and Breakdowns


credit: Maria Fitzsimons/
credit: Maria Fitzsimons/

Celebrities having mental health issues is not new. Every year there is a celebrity or former celebrity who announces to the world that they have a mental illness. There are also celebrities who have not yet been diagnosed with a DSM-5 condition, but I wish they would be. I hate watching famous people have mental breakdowns with the world watching as entertainment.

Our society has conditioned us not to be cruel towards those with cognitive disabilities or mental illness, but only if they are not famous or a politician. Some how I get the feeling people enjoy making fun of mentally ill celebrities because they don’t get to do so in their every day life.

Consider this:

Have you ever called a bi-polar woman you know a *&^$# @!#&*?

Would you send an email to the management team at your workplace informing them they are all sociopaths?

When a people tell you they have depression, would you look them in the face and call them an attention seeking whiner?


I caution people, that when they are on social media or in group conversations; be aware of how you make references towards mental illness and those who have it. I am definitely guilty of using the words “crazy”, “stupid”, “idiot”, and “dumb” on occasion. These words have been applied to all sorts of nouns in my conversations such as: “That was crazy!”, “Vegan cheese is dumb.”, “That is so stupid, why would anyone buy that?”. Over time I’ve done my best to consciously replace them with other words such as, “well alright then.”, “I see.”, “Interesting.”, or my favourite, “What the….”.

When we talk cruelly about a celebrity’s mental illness or symptoms of illness, we are not just speaking about that specific celebrity; we are unconsciously expressing how we feel about the traits of that person’s illness. No wonder people are afraid to speak openly about having been diagnosed.

Say all you want to about Kanye West and his nonsensical rants, his self-comparison’s to great achievers of the past, and his belief that he is one of the greatest humans to have ever lived; but do so knowing that he presents as possibly having a DSM-5 condition. A mentally healthy person does not behave as Kanye does. A mentally healthy person does not believe the things that Kanye West professes.

Kanye West and Jesus

We were entertained by Charlie Sheen’s mental breakdown and his tiger blood. We laughed at Jason Russell’s naked psychosis. We enjoyed Britney Spear’s bi-polar misadventures in parenthood and driving. We waited with anticipation to see what Amanda Bynes would do or wear next.

Our society needs to stop finding joy in watching other’s have mental breakdowns. The symptoms of mental illness are not for entertainment.